How to drive safely with hearing loss 22



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When it comes to awareness on the road, the noises around us can make a world of difference: an approaching siren; a polite honk from behind; a motorbike in a blind spot.

But there is no reason hearing loss needs to compromise your safety or independence as a driver. These recommendations, courtesy of We’re All Ears, will go a long way in helping you adapt.

1. Make sure you’re following all legal requirements

If you have been diagnosed with hearing loss, be sure to check in with your state’s transport authority to find out if you have any legal obligations.

In most cases there shouldn’t be any restrictions, just a friendly list of recommendations. Either way, that simple peace of mind can be an enormous source of comfort moving forward.

2. Buy an extended rear view mirror

This is something that can benefit absolutely any motorist. A wider mirror (widely available for purchase online and from car retailers) will greatly improve your spatial awareness, placing far less burden on your ears to do the hard work.

3. Eliminate unnecessary noise inside

If driving alone, this can be as simple as closing your window and keeping radio volume to a minimum.

If you are driving with passengers, take the time to ensure they’re aware of your concerns and willing to keep unnecessary conversation to a minimum. The worse the hearing loss, the greater the concentration required to listen. As such, even routine chatter can be a very genuine distraction.

4. Be extra vigilant with your indicator

It’s easy to accidentally leave an indicator on at the best of times, but when the gentle clicking is hard to hear, it becomes an enormous safety concern.

All it takes is that little extra awareness. Keep this potential oversight in mind; make the habit of double-checking after completing a turn.

5. Get your car checked up regularly

Sound is often the first clue that something might be wrong with a car. When these subtle warning signs become harder to hear, it’s all the more important to get your car on a regular maintenance routine.

6. Keep your hearing aid switched on

Finally, and most importantly: if you are selective about when you use a hearing aid, make a habit of switching it on every time you enter the car. In time, this should become just as ordinary as fastening your seatbelt – and just as important.

Not sure if a hearing aid is the right choice for you? The following independent guide is the perfect starting point. Click here to order your free copy.


This post is sponsored by Connect Hearing. It was written as we feel it delivers valuable insights into a subject important to the Starts at 60 community. To explore the full range of hearing health options available to you, please visit the Connect Hearing website.

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  1. I was wondering about this yesterday when I seriously considered wearing earplugs whenever my grandchildren are in the car! The turn feral and fight pretty much as soon as the seatbelts are on!

    2 REPLY
    • I remember a report of a woman and her three children killed in a car crash and my late mother remarking the kids were probably carrying on like mine sometimes could in the car. “Argh He’s gone to sleep with his head on me” “He punched me” etc, feral monsters at times.

    • My grand kids did this I pulled up and told them to get out . Why ma . Because I won’t have this behavour in my car now get out I am leaving you here . I will ring dad & mum to come and pick you up now get out. Then they new I was for real . Ma ma please we will be good. Well I had three angles never a problem . I would hear stop ma will stop and put you out I drive with a smile on my face . Haha gotta now safty in car

  2. Many drivers have their music up so loud they wouldn’t hear an approaching emergency vehicle or warning horn either. Extended mirrors may be illegal if not actually towing a caravan or trailer so you would have to be careful in what you select. I would recommend a reversing camera as I know my somewhat deaf husband cannot hear the beeping from the reversing sensors.

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  4. every driver should be doing ‘a head check’ (ie- looking around) and have ‘spacial awareness’

  5. Great idea Jo-anne! My sister did this when her children were young once, and she actually made them get out and drove off! (Around the block.)
    That sorted them out!

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